Author Events

At Magers & Quinn Booksellers, 3038 Hennepin Ave. S, Minneapolis, 612.822.4611,

  • August 22 – At 4 p.m., historian Jon K. Lauck reads from Prairie Republic: The Political Culture of Dakota Territory, 1879-1889, which explores South Dakota’s civic spirit. American democratic ideals, civic republicanism, public morality and Christianity were the dominant forces at work during South Dakota’s formative decade. Taking Dakota Territory as a laboratory for examining a formative stage of Western politics, Lauck argues that settlers from New England and the Midwest brought democratic practices and republican values to the northern plains and invoked them as guiding principles in the drive for South Dakota statehood. Prairie Republic corrects an overemphasis on class conflict and economic determinism. Lauck finds South Dakota’s political founders to be agents of Protestant Christianity and of civic republicanism – an age-old ideology that entrusted the polity to independent, landowning citizens who placed the common interest above private interest. Historian and attorney Jon K. Lauck is senior advisor to U.S. Senator John Thune of South Dakota and the author of Daschle vs. Thune: Anatomy of a High-Plains Senate Race and American Agriculture and the Problem of Monopoly.
  • September 5 – At 4 p.m., Jeff Deck and Benjamin Herson discuss The Great Typo Hunt: Two Friends Changing the World, One Correction at a Time. Of the two authors, Professor Steven Pinker of Harvard University and author of The Language Instinct and The Stuff of Thought notes, “This pair of kooks, with their high standards and principled civil disobedience, give me hope for the future of humanity.” Jeff Deck and Benjamin Herson created the Typo Eradication Advancement League (TEAL). Armed with markers, chalk, and correction fluid, they circumnavigated America, righting the glaring errors displayed in grocery stores, museums, malls, restaurants, mini-golf courses, beaches, and even a national park. Jeff and Benjamin championed the cause of clear communication, blogging about their adventures transforming horor into horror, it’s into its, and coconunut into coconut. But at the Grand Canyon, they took one correction too far: fixing the bad grammar in a fake Native American watchtower. The government charged them with defacing federal property and summoned them to court – with a typo-ridden complaint that claimed that they had violated “criminal statues.” Now the press turned these paragons of punctuation into “grammar vigilantes,” airing errors about their errant errand. Jeff Deck served as an associate editor for Rocks & Minerals magazine and his short stories have appeared in The Furnace Review and Boston Literary Magazine. He won two spelling bees in junior high. Benjamin Herson has been a bookseller for the past eight years. His short stories have appeared in Dan River Anthology and Down in the Dirt. Visit for more information.
  • September 9 – Magers & Quinn Booksellers presents Sara Gruen reading from her new novel Ape House at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, September 9. The author of the bestselling and beloved Water for Elephants returns with a new novel. A Q&A and signing will follow. Tickets for this reading are available at Magers & Quinn Booksellers for $5, redeemable towards the purchase of Ape House. Sam, Bonzi, Lola, Mbongo, Jelani and Makena are no ordinary apes. These bonobos, like others of their species, are capable of reason and carrying on deep relationships – but unlike most bonobos, they also know American Sign Language. Isabel Duncan, a scientist at the Great Ape Language Lab, doesn’t understand people, but she gets bonobos. Isabel feels more comfortable in their world than she’s ever felt among humans…until she meets John Thigpen, a very married reporter who braves the ever-present animal rights protesters outside the lab to see what’s really going on inside. When an explosion rocks the lab, severely injuring Isabel and “liberating” the apes, John’s human interest piece turns into the story of a lifetime, one he’ll risk his career and his marriage to follow. Sara Gruen is the author of the award-winning, bestselling novel Water for Elephants, as well as the bestseller Riding Lessons and Flying Changes. She lives in Western North Carolina, with her family, four cats, two dogs, two horses, and a goat.



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